The Service Workflow Input
System Services are contextual, and are displayed and made available based upon the type of data that is selected in the current application you are using.
For example, a system service that is designed to only process text, will not appear or be usable when a movie file is selected in the Finder.
Likewise, a system service designed to encode audio files in the Finder, will not appear or be useable when a column of text is selected in the Notes or TextEdit applications.
So, the first step in creating an Automator System Service workflow, is to indicate:
- the type of data the workflow will process; and
- the application in which the service will be available.
In Automator, data input settings for a service workflow are in the Input Banner at the top of the workflow window. (See illustration 1 )
The Input Banner contains four parameter controls:
Our example service will be designed to rename files and folders selected in the Finder. So we need to adjust the input parameters accordingly.
DO THIS ►From the Input Data Type popup menu 1 , select the Files & Folders option.
DO THIS ►From the Target Application popup menu 2 , select the Finder application.
Once you’ve made the service data input options, the Input Banner will appear as in illustration 3 , and you’re ready to build the workflow that will process the Finder files and folders passed to the service workflow.